Age of Empires IV Season 2, entitled “Map Monsters,” drops today, bringing with it a variety of new content and features. Of course, the season includes a new event with some nautical-themed cosmetics to unlock and a reset for ranked play, as well as a new map, fully remappable hotkeys, and more. You can check out a Season 2 trailer and get the full rundown of all the new content and features offered, below.
New Event and Rewards!
Set your sights atop the crow’s nest for the Age of Discovery Event and complete the in-game tasks within the time limit to unlock exclusive rewards!
- Login Reward! - Log in during the event. (Unlocks a coat of arms telescope sigil)
- Protection from the Sky - Kill 10 units with Outposts. (Unlocks a crow’s nest sigil)
- Get Your Sails On - Research the Additional Sails in Multiplayer. (Unlocks a sail coat of arms sigil frame)
- Special Orders - Destroy an enemy building in the Dark Age during a Multiplayer or Skirmish match. (Unlocks a profile portrait of a navy wax seal)
- Loot ‘Em - Loot Routiers’ camp in the France in Chaos mission. (Unlocks a coat of arms hand-hook sigil)
- Aging Up - Progress through every Age in Multiplayer match. (Unlocks a profile portrait of a scarlet macaw)
A new map, called The Pit, has been added to the game. This is an open map that features a stealth forest-filled valley housing one of the map’s 3 Sacred Sites right in the center, with small hills in each of the 4 corners that are home to the neutral markets and some of the few large resource deposits. You will spawn close to the opening of the central pit, so use the terrain to either an offensive or defensive advantage!
Map Preference System
For some time, we have heard community requests for a way to give you a say over the maps they play in Quick Match and Ranked multiplayer matches. With this update, we are adding our first version of a Map Preference system that will give you influence over the maps that you will encounter in ladder play.
New Fully Remappable Hotkey Layout
When switching into Fully Remappable mode for the first time, the default keys will be set to align with the default Grid Key layout. Once in the Fully Remappable layout you can now independently reassign any hotkey binding.
- Changes to how hotkey conflicts work - Previously, when a new hotkey conflict was created, any existing keys with the same binding would be unbound. As of this update, hotkey conflicts are allowed and creating a new conflict will provide you with an alert that lists all of the currently conflicting keys. Pressing “Continue” on this alert will assign the conflicting keys, while “Cancel” will revert the newly assigned key to its previous state.
- “Warn conflicts” toggle - Should you wish to disable the conflict alerts, a new toggle has been added called “Warn conflicts”, which will prevent any new alerts from appearing when disabled.
New Camera Zoom Options
While playing Age IV, we want you to feel like a battlefield general and city architect. The classic camera provides a closer more intimate feel that doesn’t get across this feeling. We’ve added a new camera zoom level and rotation to provide a grander vantage point on the battlefield and more holistic view of the base. This new camera mode, dubbed “Panoramic” is now a UI option you’ll have access to. If selected while in a match, you’ll need to exit back to the main menu for the setting to take effect.
Player Color Picker
We know you’ve been requesting this one for a while now… and it’s here! You will now be able to choose a color for your civ in the following game modes:
- Single Player Skirmish
- Multiplayer Custom Match
- Unranked Automatch
- Ranked Automatch
Melee v Siege Rework
We wanted to add more strategic considerations to army positioning around siege weapons while increasing realism in the interaction between siege and non-siege units. To accomplish this, we’ve made all units (except villagers) use their normal weapons vs siege units. This means the knight charge will be a powerful option vs siege if there aren’t any nearby spearman to brace. Units not using torches means they will have to get closer to their targets so it’s easier to block them and protect the siege.
Of course, we still want there to be multiple counter play options to siege weapons. To get the balance correct with this feature we’ve done a large readjustment. With torches, melee units were able to stack and push each other, allowing many units to all hit the same siege target. Now melee units obey normal pathing rules so there are only a few that can hit siege weapons at a time. To account for this, we reduced the health of siege weapons. Units like horsemen remain strong counters as we have given their melee attacks bonus damage vs siege weapons.
As you would expect, Age of Empires IV also includes a variety of balance tweaks and minor fixes. You can check out the update’s full, unabridged patch notes, right here.
Age of Empires IV is available on PC. Season 2 can be downloaded right now.